The swimming pool industry in Toronto is a thriving business sector that supports numerous manufacturing, building, installation and maintenance firms, along with a fair few companies that offer several or all of these services. Whilst this is a good thing because it means that there is plenty of choice when it comes to selecting pool companies to supply all the necessary materials you will need and pool builders to complete your new swimming pool installation, it can also make life more difficult as you may find it hard to tell the good firms from the bad. To help you avoid those companies that give the industry a bad name, we have put together this short guide.
Choosing the Right Pool Builders
Most of the time, you can avoid the bad companies by asking the right questions when you first get in touch with prospective suppliers and builders.
- Where is Their Principal Place of Business? – Whilst it may be more convenient to arrange to meet company representatives in your own home, asking to meet them at their place of work can be a far more informative exercise. By limiting yourself to firms that have a proper office and showroom, and avoiding one-man bands that don’t actually retain any staff on a full-time basis, you will give yourself a much better chance of picking a decent company.
- Have They Ever Failed to Complete a Job? – A common problem that smaller, less reputable firms often encounter is a negative cash flow. Not having enough money coming in to cover their basic operating costs, they may experience financial difficulties that leave them unable to meet their commitments. By asking the pool builders you are thinking of hiring whether they have ever left a swimming pool unfinished, you will quickly be able to weed out the bad eggs. They could always lie to you of course but a quick search online should turn up the information that you are looking for.
- What Kind of Payment Schedule Do They Require? – If you would like to make sure that the firms you are considering are run in a fiscally responsible manner, by people who know exactly what they are doing, ask to see an example of the payment terms they usually offer to new customers. Any firms that collect the majority of the money up front, or in the very early stages before they have actually done much work, should be avoided. This is not because they are likely to run off with your cash; it is because experienced pool builders know that the majority of their costs will come during the latter stages and if they collect too much money too early, they may run out of cash before the job is finished.
Always Ask for References
Once you have established the answers to the above listed questions, there is one remaining task that you need to complete: requesting references from any of the pool builders who actually managed to make it to your short list.